Marks and Spencer has ruled out opening a Simply Food store in its old town centre premises, despite pressure from MP Mark Pawsey.
The high street giant had been in the town centre since 1937 but moved its operation to Elliot’s Field in November.
Since the announcement of the closure Mr Pawsey had been in touch with M&S on numerous occasions to make the case for it to use the old shop for one of its branches which just sells food.
The idea had widespread support from people who felt they had been cut off from the much-loved store in its new out-of-town location.
But M&S has rejected the ide and Mr Pawsey said: “I’m deeply disappointed that Marks and Spencer have dismissed the case for a Simply Food store in Rugby town centre.
“I know from speaking to local residents that they feel very strongly about this, particularly elderly residents for whom travelling to Elliot’s Field is not a practical alternative to a town centre store.
“It is clear how much the company’s food offer is valued from the responses I received to my petition calling for a Simply Food store last year.
“Over one thousand residents signed my petition and this is an issue which is still regularly raised with me when I speak to local people across the town.”
“I believe that the response to the closure of the town centre store shows that there would be a strong customer base for a Simply Food Store on the High Street and I am very disappointed that Marks and Spencer will not give the opportunity further consideration.”